Mike Sales wrote:BlueRider wrote:Mike Sales wrote:
I suppose this is your knockdown refutation of any possibility of risk compensation.
I am afraid that risk compensation is a well known and accepted phenomenon.
People navigate their way in a world full of risks and rewards by taking into account their judgement of these factors. When the external environment changes they modify their behaviour.
God no, risk compensation is very much an observable human trait (seat belts anyone?).
But in my context, when i am cycling, it is an irellevence (As much as one could possibly say). I am a careful and responsible cyclist. Especially on the roads. I doubt the same could be said for a young lad bombing through the forest on his MTB or BMX, in which case i imagine a helmet and crash protection would make him feel like superman.
You claim immunity from this trait? You are welcome to your illusions, but risk compensation is not always as gross as you imagine. Small changes in behaviour or judgement, given the many decisions made in a typical cycling journey, or year, can easily absorb whatever small safety margin a helmet gives.
You are correct about seat belts. Cyclist and pedestrian casualties went up when they were mandated. I do not think that you should except yourself from the normal run of humanity.
Do i claim to be imune from this trait?
No, but i will happily argue that its influence on me during my ever-daily commute is significantly small and has no relation to a statistic (or not) which is probably heavily influenced by casual/incidental cyclists.
As that study rightly mentioned above, the problem with statistics is that the disconect from any relativity can render the statistic useless.
In the case of mature adult, commuting daily on a sensible bicycle with a good sense of self awareness and responsibillity, i would argue risk aversion statistics are eccentially so low as to be pointless.
Obviously with your differing standpoint, you will argue otherwise.